The Kholmsk Icon of the Mother of God

Commemorated on September 8

      The Kholmsk Icon of the Mother of God, by a tradition transmitted through Bishop James the Emaciated, was written by the Evangelist Luke. It was brought from Greece to Russia during the time of the Equal-to-the-Apostles Prince Vladimir, who after Baptism received many icons as a gift from Constantinople. The Kholmsk image of the Mother of God is rendered on a board of cypress wood. In the year 1261 at the time of an invasion of the Tatar (Mongol) Horde, the city of Kholm was pillaged, and the icon of the Mother of God likewise suffered: the jeweled framed was taken, the painting damaged and the icon itself thrown down. After an hundred years the holy icon was relocated and solemnly placed in the Kholmsk cathedral. On the icon there remain two deep gashes: one on the left shoulder of the Mother of God, the other – on Her right hand. The tradition was preserved, that the invading Tatars, having plundered and damaged the holy icon, – were then punished: they lost their eyesight and their faces became distorted. Accounts about the miraculous signs, worked by the Kholmsk Icon of the Mother of God, are recorded in a book by Archimandrite Ioannikes (Golyatovsky) entitled "The New Heaven".

© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.